Punt e Mes is an Italian sweet vermouth that’s been made for over a hundred years in Turin. I tend to cheap out when I buy vermouth, and usually just stick with the Trader Joe’s $4 variety, only occasionally splurging for a $10 bottle of Martini and Rossi. Punt e Mes is high-quality stuff though, selling for about $20 a bottle. It’s name implies a point-and-a-half of something, and in the case of Punt e Mes, it’s 1 point sweet red vermouth, 1/2 a point of bitter liqueur (like Campari). So while this tastes mostly like an excellent sweet vermouth, there’s a great, bitter finish to it.
Vermouth is one one of the few liquors I keep in the fridge to preserve it’s life, and my Punt e Mes lives there now, ready to be served on the rocks. Punt e Mes also works well in a Negroni:
- 1 oz gin
- 1 oz Campari (a bitter liqueur)
- 1 oz red vermouth (I used Punt e Mes)
- stir on ice and either strain into a chilled cocktail glass or serve on the rocks
- garnish with an orange peel
I’m surprised how much I liked a more bitter Negroni, and maybe it was just the quality increase from using Punt e Mes, but I fear that every Negroni I make from here on out will require Punt as the vermouth. It’s really excellent, and will run you about $18 a bottle. The Negroni and more recipes can be found in my ebook, available as a free download when you register for my newsletter.